Tuesday April 12, 2022
Happy Mahavir Jayanti!
Mahavir Jayanti is also known as the Mahavir Janma Kalyanak!
Janma Kalyanak refers to the event when the Soul of a Tirthankar is born; ‘Janma’ meaning birth and ‘Kalyanak’ meaning an auspicious event for all the living beings in this world. So today is an auspicious day, celebrated across the world, in the loving memory of the birth of Bhagwan Mahavir, the 24th Tirthankar!
Tirthankar is the greatest title in the world. Tirthankar means the founder of the Tirth (a crossing place or ford), meaning He helps people cross the sea of innumerable births and deaths in the world!
Although every moment of the life of Tirthankar is auspicious, the five Kalyankas (the Panch Kalayanak), namely Chyavan Kalyanak, Janma Kalyanak (marks the advent of the Soul of Tirthankar into this world), Diksha Kalyanak (renounces all his worldly ties), Keval Gnan Kalyanak (becomes fully Omniscient) and Nirvana Kalyanak (the Tirthankar’s Soul is absolutely free of all karma and thus liberated from the worldly existence forever), signify the most auspicious events in His life!
As and when these events happen, the heavenly Gods come down to Earth and celebrate each Kalyanak with great pomp and splendour, in worship of the Tirthankar Lord, with enormous reverence, faith and devotion.
Lord Mahavira was born in the early part of the 6th century BCE, in a royal family in Bihar, India. When He was in his mother’s womb, wealth, prosperity, peace, harmony, everything started increasing tremendously. Hence, the royal parents named their little prince as Vardhamana, meaning, ever increasing!
He was born with the symbol (laanchhan) of a lion on His body. His skin was golden in colour and His exceptional divine beauty enchanted the hearts of every being that saw Him. When Trishala Mata was resting with her new-born by her side, just then, the celestial Gods and Goddesses arrived and with great devotion and happiness in their hearts, they silently carried the baby to the Meru Mountain to celebrate the Janma Kalyanak Mahotsav. They performed the first abhishek of the little Lord with the purest water collected from various rivers. Even today, devotees perform the Snatra Puja, a ritual signifying the Janma Kalyanak, in which the idol of Tirthankar is bathed, symbolising the Indra doing Abhishek on Tirthankara on Mount Meru after the birth of Tirthankar.
When the celestial Gods began to pour the water onto the baby, ShakraDev, in whose lap the little Lord was seated, got a bit worried that how would such a small baby bear so much of water coming onto him. Lord Mahavir, sensing the celestial God’s concern, pressed the mountain down with his toe, demonstrating his strength! Seeing this, Shakra Dev sung a hymn in the praise of Lord’s glory.
‘Vardhamana Mahavira’ - a name, just listening to which, one feels happy and overwhelmed
One day, while observing Lord Mahavir in meditation, Indra Dev (the Chief Celestial God) exclaimed, "There is no one as brave and fearless and as serene and equanimous meditator as you. You are Mahaveer (meaning ‘most courageous’)!"
During his lifespan, Bhagwan Mahavir helped numerous people attain Kevalgnan and Moksha and many others, in His shelter, made incredible progress on the path of liberation.
One can attain ultimate liberation from this world, only and only in the presence of the living God, not otherwise. The 24 Tirthankara of Jainism have become Siddha. Therefore now, the Living Gnani is the only link, with whose help, we can attain Self-Realization and reach the living Tirthankar, Shree Simandhar Swami. Lord Simandhar Swami is the living God, the Vartman Tirthankar!
So on this day of the Mahavir Jayanti celebration, our prayer to Lord Vardhamana Mahavir is, “Dear Lord, May every being in this world meet the Living Gnani Purush, who will hold our hand and help us attain Moksha, like You did.”
Happy Mahavir Jayanti!!!